Celebrating the UK's trailblazing women - and inspiring the next generation

The First Women Programme was created by Real Business in 2005 and brings together outstanding women from all sectors.

The programme has created an enthusiastic and dedicated network of pioneering women, who engage directly through a series of high profile First Women events, including the Awards, Winners Lunch and Summit.

Real Business is the UK's is the most-read SME website dedicated to high-growth businesses and entrepreneurs with 124,623 monthly unique visitors (ABC audit March 2015).

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Working Lunch

At the First Women Working Lunch our inspirational winners and judges gathered to set the agenda for the 2016 First Women Summit.
 

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Summit

This full day summit leveraged ten years of the First Women movement, drawing on the phenomenal network of pioneering women the Awards has created to educate, mentor and inspire.

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Awards

Founded by Real Business and the CBI. Since 2005, the awards have grown in influence and impact and enjoy the support of many of the UK’s leading firms, industry bodies and inspirational business leaders.

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First Women Exclusives

“Head down, ass up, though not the way Jay Z means it,” is Ryan's controversial advice

Katherine Ryan: From Hooters to comedy sensation

In a world where funny women are allegedly hard to find, Katherine Ryan has become the queen of the panel show. While attending the First Women Summit 2016, she unveiled [...]

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“I would definitely tell my children not to have kids in Britain,” one panelist said

Best practices from around the world which could close the gap

The UK has fallen from ninth to 26th spot in the World Economic Forum's "most unequal" global ranking. But what can we learn from peers able to achieve more success [...]

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The panelists of 2015's intriguing debate

Do we need to pick our battles – and let some slide – to put gender equality on global agenda?

The question of whether to sometimes accept prejudice to further the cause of women was a hotly-debated topic at the First Women Summit – with the panelists being divided of [...]

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Image: Shutterstock

Women don’t make less than men, but there’s a reason why it seems that way

One of the topics tackled during our CBI-backed First Women Summit on 4 February was the seemingly never closing gender pay gap. However, things don't appear as they first ay [...]

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Researchers found that gender biases in image search results affected how people perceived certain occupations

Is there a reasonable reason why the first female CEO in Google images is Barbie?

When you type the word "CEO" into Google images, you'll need to scroll down rows of men – and generic pictures – before you finally reach a female CEO. And [...]

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How many women can you spot in this image?

How the Consumer Electronic Show reveals tech sector needs to press the button for gender equality

While attending the Consumer Electronics Show, Mark Soden, MD of Norman Broadbent, explained that while the newest products were on display, it was blatantly obvious there was a lack of [...]

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Join the conversation #RBFIRSTWOMEN

Paul Coombs Paul Coombs @Coombsaint RT @rachelmostyn: Such a great point from MP @cj_dinenage when talking about the #genderpaygap #RBFirstWomen https://t.co/Zz93I1ZqiV 2 days ago
Muniya Barua Muniya Barua @muniya_b RT @BizAdvice_UK: We’ve had some incredible First Women nominations already - who will you put forward? https://t.co/NUZWhUK9j3 #RBFIRSTWOM 3 days ago
CBI Business Voice CBI Business Voice @CBIBizVoice The gender diversity debate is shifting & everyone needs to get involved https://t.co/lmCd0cR1rd #rbfirstwomen https://t.co/c6AEzzPI6T 3 days ago
The CBI The CBI @CBItweets RT @BizAdvice_UK: We’ve had some incredible First Women nominations already - who will you put forward? https://t.co/NUZWhUK9j3 #RBFIRSTWOM 3 days ago
Business Advice Business Advice @BizAdvice_UK We’ve had some incredible First Women nominations already - who will you put forward? https://t.co/NUZWhUK9j3 #RBFIRSTWOMEN @CBItweets 3 days ago
Real Business Real Business @Real_Business We’ve had some incredible First Women nominations already - who will you put forward? https://t.co/Zndpqh8L0H #RBFIRSTWOMEN @CBItweets 3 days ago
maruska maruska @maruska159 RT @CarlottaBazzi: Thank you #RBFirstWomen and #EMC for the great event! https://t.co/lR1vEeabra 4 days ago